Change in Social Values in America

The change in social values in American society in the last 50 years has changed the face of education in the following: 1) The structure of the family has changed; 2) Teachers and caregivers have become surrogate parents, and 3) Religion has become less important. Families are no longer made up exclusively of the traditional father and stay-at-home mother. There are families run by a single parent, blended families, and gay and lesbian households. As a result, students are taught about the different types of families through social sciences and literature.

Students read about the different types of families to see that not’ all families have a biological mother and father. It’s important for teachers to help students learn to accept families that may be different, yet teach students to accept their own families. This can be done by students’ writing about their families or drawing/taking a family portrait and sharing with classmates. In addition, teachers and care givers have become surrogate parents. The American government had raised taxes which have caused many mothers to work outside the home.

Mothers who choose to work frequently place their children in daycare. Not only are the care givers teachers but are often surrogate parents. They are responsible for administering discipline that is usually done by parents. This is true of school-age teachers. They are frequently having to help students stay on task. Teachers find themselves spending almost enough time disciplining students as they do teaching. For example, teachers may ask students to put away a cell phone and get a negative reaction.

The teacher would rather be teaching a lesson rather than battling a student over a cell phone. The discipline issue could be solved with parents and teachers working together. Religion played a much stronger role in society during the 1950s and 1960s; but when the Supreme Court ruled that placing the Ten Commandments on classroom walls violated the principle of separation of church and state, this began religion’s playing a lesser role in society. American society, especially in the 1970s, began to develop the “if it feels good do it” attitude. Church attendance became less important.

Couples chose to marry outside the church or live together without marriage. Americans became more interested in establishing businesses and making a profit. Society began to teach self-help for success rather than depending on a higher power. Educators began teaching from a view that excluded religion, so individuals without a belief would not be uncomfortable in society. Some people see a lack of religion in society as moral decay. Teachers now do their best to teach about different religions around the world and do their best to present the pros and cons of religion.

There are some parents who choose to remove their children from public schools to put their children in schools where they feel their children would learn their values. Teachers should work with these students and not be hostile toward religious beliefs but work out a solution with the parents and the community. These are just a few of social problems that educators face. It’s vitally important that parents, educators, administrators, and local governments get together to collaborate. This would help make our society much better.